Non-salty tasty food?: I like salt in my... - Early CKD Support

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Non-salty tasty food?


I like salt in my food, not too much but it is always required for taste. Now my doctor says eat only 1400 mg of sodium/day. Now The food is very bland and I have a very hard time eating it. Are there any tasty substitutes to salt which I can use in my food ? Could you also suggest some non-salty tasty snacks. Thanks in advance.

15 Replies

You could try using other spices, including pepper, in greater quantities so your food is less bland. I managed to cut out any added sugar and drink sugar free versions of drinks. You just get used to not having it. I suspect it would be similar with salt. If you're really struggling to hit your target, try cutting down gradually. Most kidney patients will have high potassium levels, so DO NOT substitute salt fro low sodium varieties as the sodium is replaced with potassium.

in reply to gilders

Thanks for the tip, I will try my best to implement it.

Sadly there is salt/sodium in most all processed foods. A little salt in your cooking where you can control the amount is far better than anything pre made shop bought. I don't buy pre prepared foods without knowing what the contents are. If it is not stated then it is not purchased. I forgo restaurants as mostly salt is added to everything cooked. As for fast food, well, that now means raw vegetables or a boiled egg, no salt!

Sadly with IBS I cannot use herbs and spices as a substitute, but luckily garlic is fine with me. I also have to watch my sugar intake for diabetes, eventually I have made the required changes for that as well.

Occasionally the good old fish and chips gets on the menu( very occasionally, no longer once a week) and they are not the same without salt. But I can control the amount by getting them unsalted and salting my portion sparingly myself, sometime none at all, but not often! Too much salt or sugar puts me off, I notice too much salt or sugar even more now.

Eventually you can get used to anything if you HAVE too, like it or not it is what is required to stretch the kidney life. I guess, to be blunt, how much do you want to stick around? That will determine if you change your habits or not.

I was resistant and never going to change my diet for anyone but some how I got past the anger and the fact that being CKD doesn't mean D for Death, just D for Diseased or Diminished function. Eventually I conceded and Change to Kidney Diet, CKD!

I now look back and wonder why I made such a fuss over something I had to do.

Good luck and keep trying, the effort is worth the results.

in reply to Cheyne13

Thanks for your tip. I will try my best to abstain. Right now "D" sounds more like death for me .

in reply to boon1

I know the feeling well. It took me 2 years to get past thinking death, but now I have a new lease on life. The cup is now half full and not half empty. Same cup, just viewed differently.

Think of salt as an acquired taste, we're not born craving the stuff, the same for a lot of other things we thick we can't do without in life. I'm no angle when it comes to diet but a taste of the forbidden fruit in moderation once in a long while has been sustainable for the kidneys and a pure pleasure in the moment for me. Interestingly the gaps between doing without get longer over time, and I can't say I really miss what I'm not supposed to have that much anymore.


I use this. There is also a recipe for Sauce-less BBQ Baby Back Ribs I can send if you are interested.


“For those of us who have been told to cut back on salt, this all-around handy blend can give herbal zest to any meal,” shares Lorna Wall in Ottawa, Canada. Or put in decorative shakers and use as thoughtful holiday stocking stuffers!

MAKES:--24 servings

TOTAL TIME:--Prep/Total Time: 10 min.


•1 tablespoon dried basil

•1 tablespoon dried thyme

•1 tablespoon ground coriander

•2 teaspoons onion powder

•2 teaspoons dried parsley flakes

•2 teaspoons ground cumin

•1 teaspoon garlic powder

•1 teaspoon ground mustard

•1 teaspoon cayenne pepper

•1 teaspoon paprika


In a small bowl, combine all ingredients. Store in an airtight container in a cool, dry place for up to 1 year. Yield: 1/2 cup.


1 teaspoon: 5 calories, 0 fat (0 saturated fat), 0 cholesterol, 1mg sodium, 1g carbohydrate (0 sugars, 0 fiber), 0 protein.

in reply to lowraind

Thank you lowraind .The Herbal salt looks very promising. Is it available to buy online ? I am a vegetarian ,the bbq ribs won't work for me.

in reply to boon1

Not as far as I know. I make my own.

......also check with your doctor about salt levels. They vary for every individual of course but stage 2 and 3 patients are ‘usually’ advised 1500 mg of ‘SODIUM’ per day. This actually equates to 3200mg of salt - because salt has 40% sodium content.

We don’t know your stage or condition But please check with doctor as there may be a reason that you’re advised otherwise. But for clarity 1400 salt is actually only 560mg of sodium - and sodium is the thing that needs limiting.

All advice above great though - Cajun style spice great too - often good flavours without salt (but always check)

in reply to Hope66

Sorry my doc said 1400 mg of sodium. I corrected that. Going to check out Cajun food. Thanks.

in reply to Osidge

Useful tips. Thank you

For salty taste I use red wine vinegar. It tastes salty but has no sodium. Try and be sure to buy organic. I also use lemon a lot. Lemon pepper is a favorite, you only need a tiny bit to add a ton of flavor. Be careful with pepper, research it, some pepper is high in phosphorus.

Useful Thank you

So leave the salt shaker alone, you'll find that you don't need it. It's just a habit like tobacco or alcohol.

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